Belarus to exchange Russian ruble for American dollar

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The National Bank of Belarus has announced that it will stop tying the Belarusian ruble to the Russian ruble starting from 2008. This is confirmed in the prepared project of the main tendencies of the National Bank’s monetary and credit policy.

Now Belarus is officially tying its ruble to the Russian ruble with the difference of +/ - 4% and to the dollar (+/- 2.5%). The American currency will become the only guiding line starting from the next year.

Anyway, according to a Russian internet-magazine “Finance”, the currency policy of Minsk does not depend on the situation on the Russian market anymore.

Belarus keeps all its reserves in dollar assets and pays in USD for all major contracts (including oil and gas).

The magazine thinks that the announcement of the Belarusian government was caused by political reasons: the relations with Moscow are worsening and Alyaksandr Lukashenka would like to show that Belarus can go on without any integration with Russia.